A third of us in the US now show signs of clinical anxiety. Saying 2020 has been rough is an understatement.
Anxiety isn't just about feeling worried or panicked. It can also manifest in physical symptoms like nausea, vomiting, feeling shaky and diarrhea.
For people with periods, it can be especially worse the week before their period.
Anxiety has a root cause that should be investigated, but it doesn't mean you should be left to suffer with debilitating symptoms. Here are some quick strategies to help you wrangle those anxiety symptoms before they bubble up. Starting with what's in your garden and yard and /or free:
Use lavender to relieve anxiety
Lavender can help promote a calm state, which makes it a great essential oil to keep on hand. Try smelling lavender before a stressful presentation, when you’re ready for bed, or just
before meditation or yoga.
Try relaxation training
Research has consistently shown relaxation training to be effective at reducing and managing anxiety. Find a health care practitioner who can teach you this technique and aim to practice daily.
If you’re feeling anxious energy then give your body an outlet and get moving. You can do 10 squats next to your desk. You can go for a walk in nature, which has its own added benefits. Exercise also releases endorphins, which can really help your mood. Now that we are in daylight savings mode, getting outside each and every day, no matter what the weather is super helpful.
Maybe this has been the major missing ingredient for our moods in 2020. Hugs for 20 seconds or more release oxytocin. This opposes cortisol so you feel calm. Can’t hug someone? Stare deep into your dog’s eyes, pet your furry friend, cuddle a cat (lol, if they are willing), have an orgasm, breastfeed...obviously these won’t all work for everyone, but each of these will release oxytocin.
Don’t eye roll this one. It’s said a lot, but that’s because it works. When we get anxious our breath can get shallow and rapid. Slow your breath and take it to the base of your lungs. Do this before the anxiety creeps in and it’s even better if you can do it first thing when you wake.
This is an herb that supports the GABA pathway in your brain. GABA is a neurotransmitter that puts the hush on the panic signals so you feel more calm.
This is an herb in the mint family that helps soothe the nervous system so you feel a little more at peace in your body. It's incredibly easy to grow here in the northwest and I have lots in my backyard if you would like to plant some in your yard.
It’s been shown that a magnesium deficiency can lead to symptoms of anxiety. But even if you’re not deficient, magnesium can help support a healthy brain, mood, energy, sleep, and PMS phase. I recommend magnesium glycinate - 400 mg/ at night should do the trick.
Get to know L-theanine
L-theanine is an amino acid found in green tea and has been shown to reduce symptoms of anxiety and the physiological signs of stress, like high blood pressure. Aim for 200 milligrams once to twice daily for the most benefit.
The bottom line:
1. You have strategies and tools here to manage your anxiety that don't involve pharmaceuticals.
2. I'm here for you when you need nutritional support, guidance, therapy, supplements, etc. E-mail, call, text, or stop by!
3. A new year is right around the corner!